Friends! I have so many life updates to share. The last month has been a whirlwind that I did not see coming, but God certainly did. Everything has worked out so smoothly but CRAZY fast, and I have felt God’s presence and leading in profound ways.
The short version:
I took a new job at Second Presbyterian Church in Indianapolis. I start on July 12th!
I bought the most perfect house 4 minutes from the church! If all goes well, I move in late July.
Let’s back up!
I LOVE Anderson University. While I am moving on from working at AU, I will always be a proud alum and biggest fan. As I share about this new season, I want everyone to know that I still have deep love for AU and will definitely stay connected.
Three years ago, I was promoted to Director of Residence Life. I loved my colleagues and the university, but the position itself was never quite “me.” If you know my personality at all, you know how bad of a fit it is for Maggie Platt to be the one doling out discipline and sometimes dismissing (aka kicking out) students. I loved my earlier role as Resident Director, managing a building and spending time with my students. The really “bad” and serious stuff was handled by my boss. Then I became that boss and had to handle the really bad and serious stuff (major conduct violations, medical emergencies, mental health emergencies, angry parents — SO MANY ANGRY PARENTS ALL THE TIME, sexual assault investigations, etc.) . I should have seen from the beginning that this wasn’t for me. However, deep in the haze of my grief over my mother’s passing, I decided to take the leap when the promotion was offered. I mildly regret it at times. I wonder what life would be like if I had stayed an RD. BUT, mostly I know that it was a good move at the time. I served as faithfully as I could in that position, I did my best to love students in pretty rough circumstances, I gave everything I have toward Covid mitigation, and now God is leading me to a new, fresh season.
Right around the time I was in Florida with my family in late May, two of my friends encouraged me to read a job description for an opening at their church in Indy. They had mentioned it to me before and said it sounded just like me. I read over the description and agreed — Holy moly, I would LOVE this job. A lot of planning, organizing, and hospitality. Right up my alley! I did not expect to leave AU, but I decided it wouldn’t hurt to submit my resume.
I had two interviews in the week and a half between Florida and my trip to Utah’s national parks. Walking into the building, everything felt so right. I realized, “Oh, goodness. I really want this job and this community.” So, I was thrilled when I received an offer while in beautiful Utah!
So, what’s the job? And where is it?
I will be at Second Presbyterian Church in Indianapolis. If you know the area, you’ll recognize it as the big cathedral on North Meridian. I’m a history junky, and I could go on and on about the history of this church (started by a group of abolitionists in the 1800s! The first pastor was the famous Henry Ward Beecher). The story of the move from downtown up to the current location is even interesting (forced by city planners). The building itself was partially modeled after Sainte-Chapelle in Paris, which was one of my favorite places when I visited in 2011.
One of the best parts is I already know about half of the staff! I know them from all different seasons of my life. I have met some of them through two of my besties who attend there, some through Camp Pyoca, some through weddings and funerals I have attended there (I’ve been a bridesmaid in that sanctuary twice! It is a LONG aisle to walk in high heels with so many eyes on you…), and even a parent of one of my mom’s favorite students who then became my camper at Pyoca. And because of my friends who attend Second, I have met so many wonderful people who call that church “home.” I even have some cousins who attend there!
It is a large, thriving church, welcoming of all. The senior pastor shared a pretty incredible vision with me, and I’m so excited to get on board. He was much more eloquent, but here is a summary: He wants Second to be a community where people are transformed by the love of Christ, and he also wants to see every member of the congregation serving and giving back (not just at the church, but in the community as well). Those two things definitely go hand-in-hand in my experience. We are the most transformed by Christ when we are serving others.
**Important to note that I do not speak for Second Church in this space. My blog is full of my own personal thoughts and experiences.**
I have great respect for this senior pastor and really enjoyed my time with him. And that’s a good thing because he is my new boss! I will be serving as the Executive Assistant to the Senior Pastor. I giggle a bit in my head every time I think about that title. I could pull a Dwight Shrute and tell people I’m the “Executive Assistant Senior Pastor.” (ha) As he described it, I will basically be “a project manager for a person.” His time is taken by a lot of competing demands, and he still needs space to dream, plan, write, and prepare. So, my role is to keep the office running, manage his time and commitments, welcome and play host to guests, manage/organize lots of projects, and provide any other support needed as Second chases after this vision of a community transformed by Christ.
One of the pastors sitting in on my interview mentioned how she believes I will have more time to write and edit in this new season. I think she is right! According to the person previously in this position, I will not have the sleepless nights or heavy stress that came with the emergency management and conduct portions of my previous job. And while I may have to deal with some angry phone calls, at least they (usually) won’t be angry at me! 😉
The next surprise: My house sold as soon as I shared with AU that I was resigning. A former coworker reached out to say he and his wife wanted to purchase a home in Anderson, and they asked about my house. I was originally planning to commute for a few months until I got settled into the new job, but God had different plans! I am thrilled that this sweet house will be home to friends who will love it as much as I have! And who will let me come back and dig up some of my sentimental/heirloom plants!
That brings me to the most recent part of the whirlwind… Because of the completely nutty housing market, I expected it to take a long time to find a house. I expected heartbreak, lots of refused offers, anxiety, and frustration.
Well, thank goodness I am working with the GOAT realtor! One of my very best friends, Courtney Miller, is a realtor in the Indy area who has taken central Indiana by storm (she wins awards, is featured in magazines, and was even invited to be a part of HGTV’s House Hunters. Basically, she is the coolest AND extremely competent and professional.) Check her out on Instagram @courtneymiller_realtor
After a half week at Camp Pyoca, volunteering with the 2nd-4th graders, Courtney scheduled my first round of showings. It was supposed to be a research trip, to see what I liked and didn’t. We expected to wait until I had closed on my house so that I didn’t have to make a contingent offer.
I fell in love with the second house we looked at. Like, so smitten it hurt. Four minutes from Second, beautiful street, 100% remodeled house (I wouldn’t have to do anything), and included every single item on my wish list. My wish list was LONG too. I assumed I would have to give up something, especially in my price range and in the current ridiculous housing market. But this house was everything I wanted.
And I’m working at SECOND and it was the SECOND house I looked at. Meant to be, right? 🙂
I couldn’t stop thinking about it. So, Courtney did some poking around, found out what might be attractive to the sellers, advised me on what to include in my offer, and WE HAVE A DEAL. Holy moly. I’m keeping the details to myself until it is final, because there are a lot of things that could go wrong between now and closing. But, with how everything has been falling into place, I can’t imagine this will be any different.
This house is just so beautiful. I can hardly believe it is going to be mine! I’ll post lots of pics after closing and when I’m moved in. Also, the sellers had Harry Potter and Narnia on their shelves, and IU magnets on the fridge. I’m so sad they are moving, because we would definitely be friends! ha! But glad they are handing this wonderful house over to me.
I’m overwhelmed by the goodness of this change. I have been through some very rough times in the last few years, and God has been faithful and held me through it all (even when I couldn’t see it). This rush of newness and excitement feels like a completely fresh season, and I am so excited for what it will bring.